My birthday is just over two weeks away, and it’s a pretty big number this time around. While I have no real intention of throwing a massive party, I will definitely be celebrating all month long. I have a five-day weekend coming up, and my roommate bought us tickets to Yankee Stadium on July 4th. When I have time after work, I’ll be visiting some of my favorite museums and bars. I’ve got the Oddities Flee Market in Greenpoint is coming up on July 21st. And, who knows, I may even stop by Coney Island one weekend.
It’s safe to say that I’m no where near where I thought I’d be at this age. I once thought that by now I’d be completely settled in a successful career in acting and filmmaking. I thought I’d be happily married with my first child on the way. It’s pretty safe to say that that’s not where I am at all. But instead of being bitter, I feel more prepared and determined than ever to make things happen. I’m in the middle of transitioning from a soul-crushing job into freelancing full-time. I’ve spent the past five years being single, and during this time I’ve become more confident and self-reliant than I ever was before.
The truth is that sometimes you need hard lessons and disappointments in order for things to work out in the long run. And no, I’m not talking about severe emotional trauma as that only makes things worse in the long run. I mean that sometimes things have to get messy for a while. Sometimes you have to dive into life completely unprepared, screw things up horribly, and figure out what went wrong so you don’t make the same mistakes again. While I’m still anxious about what the future holds, I’m now more ready than ever to face what happens next.
As an early celebration, I wanted to share with you some of the greatest lessons I’ve learned during my time on this earth. While I know that I still have more to learn, and there’s no doubt that some of you are as stubborn as I am, let’s take this moment to appreciate how far we’ve come and how much further we can go.
My List of Pre-Birthday Musings:
- Life isn’t about finding yourself, it’s about creating yourself and adapting to what ever it throws your way.
- It’s impossible to be liked by everyone, so don’t bother trying. Just be who you are, and the right people will come along.
- Family members usually mean well, but they don’t always know what’s best.
- Those who think they know everything always have the most to learn.
- Whether it’s a friend, a family member, or a romantic partner, never waste time on anyone who doesn’t make you happy.
- Some people will criticize you no matter what you do. At some point, you can’t take them into account anymore.
- There truly is no such thing as “normal” in this world. There’s only “social acceptable.”
- Good intentions mean nothing if the end result is an absolute disaster.
- There are certain people in this world who are just too toxic for their own good, and nothing will ever get them to change. Avoid them as much as possible, as they will only crush your soul.
- Shared interests are fantastic, but they can’t be all that you base your relationships on. Shared morals and life experiences make for an infinitely stronger bond.
- Those who seem the happiest have usually been through more than you can ever comprehend.
- While someone else may always have it worse, your own struggles are still valid.
- Nothing is more liberating than completely and unapologetically embracing who you are.
- Femininity does not equal weakness. In many ways it’s much stronger than masculinity, so never be afraid to embrace it.
- You will be happier once you stop comparing your life and progress to others. Everyone moves at their own pace, and you never know what struggles they’ve had to overcome.
- Never, ever let love blind you. When those you admire say or do something wrong, hold them accountable every time.
- Your relationship, or lack thereof, does not define your worth as a person.
- Just the same, you are worth more than any job you’ll have in your lifetime.
- There is no age limit when it comes to finding love. In fact, you may have better luck when you’re much older.
- True love and devotion should never come with a price.
- Despite what you’ve been taught, there isn’t someone out there for everyone. And, to be honest, that’s perfectly okay.
- Children can be wonderful, but don’t let anyone make you feel like they are needed for a fulfilling life.
- Life is not a work of fiction. The evil in this world is greater and more enduring than anyone will ever know, and those in power will stop at nothing to maintain it.
- Even the smallest act of kindness can make all the difference in the world.
- The love of an animal is one of the purest things there is.
- Your mental illness may never go away, but it doesn’t have to define your life either.
- You are only as old as you allow yourself to feel.
- From a favorite book to an everyday commute to work, inspiration can be found anywhere.
- True friends really are hard to come by. So when you find them, never take them for granted.
- No one’s life ever goes the way they planned, so don’t ever feel like a failure when you see that yours hasn’t.
- (BONUS LESSON) It’s never too late to change your life for the better or to pursue the things you love
I love you all!